In a typical household, we begin our day with a cup of tea. This is the most common beverage in an Indian household after water ofcourse. Some people drink 1 cup a day to even 4-5 cups a day. As food is an expression of love, so is an expression through tea. Since, tea is such an integral part of Indian cuisine, its benefits, its correct way to drink to avail most of its benefits is of prime importance.
1. Tea and weight loss
Drink a cup of tea and within an hour of drinking you can burn 10 calories more. Drink 4 cups of tea and within 24 hours before your ½ an hour walk and you burn an extra 1 gm fat and if you consume tea 3 times a day you burn 80 more calories a day, and this doesn't even add calories, teas have negative calories. On an average each cup of tea we burn 25 calories. This is applicable to all black tea or white tea and green tea and excludes masala teas. Just by drinking 3-6 cups of oolong or green tea we can increase our metabolic rate and burn 100 extra calories a day.
2. Black tea vs Milk tea
If we add milk to the tea it reduces the consumption of healthy compounds from tea. Casein which is present in milk reduces the metabolic benefits and calorie burning effects of food. Casein wraps the catechins and blocks the functions of tea and doesn't not show any health benefits. So, cutting chai, masala chai or any milk based chat doesn't show much health benefit. It is the same if you prepare it in soy milk.
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3. Right combination for tea
Tea’s have compounds called tannins and catechins. This compound reduces the absorption of iron from foods. So, if you are eating nuts like almonds, walnuts, cashews etc with tea, you will not be able to retain iron from it. Even if you have roasted chana or bengal gram with tea, iron from these foods will not get absorbed. If you have iron deficiency or are at risk of anemia, have nuts 30 mins - 1 hour after or before consuming tea. A better tea combination would be makhana, puffed rice or homemade millet crackers or homemade oats biscuits with it. Avoid adding iron rich foods with tea.
4. Green tea vs White tea
If you add lemon to white tea, then white tea is better than green tea, otherwise prefer green tea over white tea. It is said that, by adding lemon to white tea, the phytonutrients in white tea are released because it requires a certain PH level for nutrients to be released. If we look at cancer prevention both green and white teas are beneficial. Though white tea is better in preventing cancer as compared to green tea. If you steep longer than 1 minute you may not see much difference. So, the best way to drink tea is to drink in black, green or white and never mix milk in tea. And if you drink tea, drink it with a healthy snack or no snack at all only then you will be able to obtain health benefits of tea.
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